It seems somewhat ironic that October 21st is both Celebration of The Mind Day and Information Overload Day.Our brains are complex, wonderful organs that function on so many levels that even after decades of research experts have still not fully unlocked all the secrets of the brain. With the Internet, social media, and more online communications, our brains are often experiencing a barrage of information to process.
And more people are worried about staying mentally sharp to cope with the increasingly taxing complexities of life as well as to stave off brain-related diseases as Alzheimer's and dementia.
Here are a few tips to stay mentally alert:
Get connected - Forging and maintaining close relationships is a great way to maintain mental skills and memory. Having these social relationships also provides support during stressful times, reducing the damaging effects that stress can have on the brain.
Keep learning - Try a new activity that forces you to think in a different way and make more and new brain connections - like learning a new language, a new craft or hobby, new puzzles or brain teasers that will keep your brain stimulated.
Get handsy - Visual and tactile movement (hand-eye coordination) takes a lot of brain activity and builds brain power. Build something, throw a ball, play tennis.
Do something new - New experiences give you a lot to think about and take in. Even better, write down thoughts about the experience or talk about it with others.
Memorize things - Learn a new song or memorize passages from a book. Careful studying and listening will sharpen your thinking.
Consume antioxidants - Foods rich in antioxidants (blueberries, dark chocolate) have been proven to reduce neurodegenerative disease. Plus, they are also good for your physical health by lowering cholesterol and blood pressure.
Get moving - Fifteen to 30 minutes of exercise, three times a week stimulates brain function and has been shown to increase the number of brain cells in the hippocampus.
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